Cunard Crew Member Lost at Sea

A crew member reportedly disappeared from the Queen Mary II as the cruise ship was in transit across the Atlantic Ocean.

A person on the cruise ship who wishes to remain anonymous contacted me this morning to report that a crew member went overboard early this morning. The crew member apparently was not seen when he went overboard and the ship does not have an automatic man overboard system.  The cruise ship turned around to search for the man who went overboard many hours ago. The captain Kevin Oprey announced the overboard incident to the passengers.

The weather is bad with reports of fog as the search continues. The QM2 is sailing between Southampton and Halifax. 

The crew member is reportedly a male chef from Chile.

17 people have gone overboard from cruise ships so far this year

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Photo Credit: Christian Bischof licensed under Creative Commons 3.0 via Wikipedia

Queen Mary 2

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Comments (32) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Brett Bachmann - August 15, 2015 10:33 AM

Tragic.....glad to hear the ship turned around and is conducting a search.

muthu - August 15, 2015 1:35 PM

It may be work pressure, I would tell you that there is no better salary for the chef if we compared with waiters salary on board.chef produced the food, plated and waiter send to the customer table got more salary and tips than chef.this culture has to be changed in all cruiseship.

Bev salvadori - August 15, 2015 2:02 PM

My heart goes to all my those affected by this loss. How sad for his roomie and his HOD. My prayers go out to his family. God bless his soul

Silvana yelpi - August 15, 2015 2:45 PM

He was my paisano, every time I went o crew mess he was there wich his lovely Fish just cooked , that was the only time I eat in crew mess šŸ˜¢

Harold Kurte - August 15, 2015 3:20 PM

What a horrible tragedy for the loved ones remaining. Cruise Lines consider life as pretty cheap. Man overboard systems must be mandated by Federal Law for all ships sailing with American Passengers and not wait for the Cruise Lines to install such a system.

Andy Mitchell - August 15, 2015 3:40 PM

My heart goes out to his family. How do you know he went overboard? Did someone see him? We are Cunard Platinum world class club and we have heard a few times where the staff on board sometimes don't get on with each other and indeed the hierarchy on board treat the staff badly. Is this a case of bullying? What are the Captains views, as there are not comments from Kevin O`Prey??

fabio murillo - August 15, 2015 4:21 PM

somebody knows his name?? I'm from Chile and i have in the queen mary II , thanks all.

Russ - August 15, 2015 5:59 PM

it is a very sad thing to hear about and to happen. My only comment to the last comment on here is that maybe the captain and his bridge team are somewhat more busy trying to find this poor guy than worrying about making comments. I'm fairly sure it's not company policy to comment on these matters until they are resolved.

Lucknauth Mahendra - August 15, 2015 6:54 PM

I knew him .... Very nice guy!!! RIP my brother ... You will be missed.

Tim Dye - August 15, 2015 7:58 PM

Harold,
You'll be very Old before The cruise Lines Voluntarily install such Systems!

somebody - August 15, 2015 11:36 PM

Well, its a very nice ship thing what he did we dont have any clue why he did this,but need to add on this ship not from the company but from this senior management specially in the dining room they put lots of pressure on the waiters and assistant waiters for no reasons they always turn you wrong they give you promotion and then they demote you there has been lots of case that crew member has been dismissed from the company trying to do these thing and having lots of alcohol because of promotion and pressure in the dining room..

Lyn-Anne MacKinnon - August 16, 2015 3:50 AM

Heard this awful news & felt numb knowing my wee brother is one of the crew on this ship. Thankfully as far as we are aware he is safe. God bless this poor man. Give strengh to his family at this very sad time. Thoughts are with everyone involved.

Pablo - August 16, 2015 4:52 AM

Por favor!!!! Debe ser mentira que paƭs con Favio OƱate!!! No puedes dejarnos asƭ!!!

Mohamed - August 16, 2015 9:58 AM

god bless his family

Karen - August 16, 2015 10:45 AM

Que irresponsabilidad mas grande de un crucero tan prestigioso...toda la responsabilidad para Queen mary II...
Espero lo encuentren

maria spanou - August 16, 2015 1:17 PM

I travel on the QM2 every year. this is distressing.. I want the company to treat the employees well.. without them there is no business.

maria spanou - August 16, 2015 1:18 PM

I travel on the QM2 every year. this is distressing.. I want the company to treat the employees well.. without them there is no business.

Isabel - August 16, 2015 1:20 PM

Such a sad news! I just read it, first they've been looking for 5 hours all around the ship after that time they made the announcement of man overboard. By this time tthey canceled the searching. I wonder if there's nothing on the videos how they can assume that the guy jump , why after 5 hours they realized that one crewmenber is missing. My prays go for him and his family in Chile.R.I.P Favio OƱate!!

Declan Sanchez - August 16, 2015 2:02 PM

Speculation about why he did it what was the reason etc etc etc.....it is easy to sit and blame the cruise line. but people that take their own lives do not do it because theya re making a low salary. there are other issues here at play and to blame the various companies is the lazy way out at best.

There was obviously other issues at play here and maybe working away from home this time was more than he could bear. we will never know unless he wrote a detailed not

god bless him and his family and just hope that the Cruise Lines do more for their crew so this pattern of going overboard stops.

Thierry - August 16, 2015 2:27 PM

Words from my Fiance, Andrew.
"17 people have gone overboard on cruise ships this year"
I have a question... How many crew members will it take?
How many lives will be lost before cruise ship companies are forced to seriously look at the quality of life of their crew members? How long before they look at how senior officers are truly treating the people who are under them. How long before organizations like the MLC step in and say enough is enough.
How many people have to go overboard before the cruise company is held liable for lives lost at sea? Before people start to ask what could we have done differently to avoid this tragedy...
Cruise ship workers work extortionate hours, they are forced to live with another person (who usually they haven't met until they arrive at their room) in a cabin the size of a postage stamp, and no windows, you can go weeks without seeing the sun.. Not to mention I have met officers who have done things so awful to people under their command that had they been on land they would have instantly lost their jobs or worse been arrested. Is it fair that because so many workers come from developing countries that they are not entitled to the same protection from labour law as someone from Canada or the U.S.A? No it's not, It's time that the organizations with the ability to make a change say enough is enough. It's time that cruise ship companies start taking a serious look at quality of life of the base level crew member. It's time that they are held accountable for the lives that they have assumed responsibility for.

David Cowan - August 16, 2015 4:11 PM

My sympathies to his friends and family. I don't know why he went overboard and it is not clear that anybody else is either.

However, I sincerely hope it was not because he was not happy with his situation at work. Taking your life because you don't like your job is, quite frankly, asinine. If you don't like what you are doing, do something else. If your supervisors are harder on you than you think is fair or you think the company is treating you poorly, move on. I guess killing yourself is another option, but not really a good one.

Sam - August 16, 2015 6:17 PM

I totally agree with Thierry! I have worked on several cruise ship companies over the last 7 years and it's all the same. They give trainings on top of trainings that we should respect eachother and greet one another as fellow crew members but all officers are the same! They will walk past crew without a good morning or hello. How would others follow that example. I worked on QM2 myself and have seen with my own eyes Capt. Ophey not acknowledging crew. How do you think they feel? They say we can go to see our manager or HR. I went to HR once and was told that in that's company you see your HOB first. Many things are taking place and when people complain to head office nothing is done. I got a simple 'thank you, we will lo into it'. They tell is there is a 1800# i xallef and got nowhere. All crew know they are onboard to work and those from third world countries are so afraid to loose their job that they prefer to stay silent than to speak up.
I am Canadian and I have spoken up many times. But nothing changed. One thing I can say is that I am surprised of this article to hear about the Chilean guy because Cunard was one of the best cruise companies I have worked for. I felt really appreciated for my work. As opposed to RCCL or Oceania, they could not care less about crew.
17 crew members and how many others we don't knoe about? One crew was reported found hung in his cabin on Crystal cruises, also from the galley. Cruise ship life is very hard don't get me wrong, but with the right treatment it can be a pleasant experience. There has to be ways to make crew feel at home away from home. There are ways, crew tours, crew parties, crew activities and give aways. Crew should feel comfortable to talk to someone and be heard. I think that is the biggest problem.


A-Riley - August 17, 2015 6:50 AM

Great guy.. going to be sadly missed! RIP peace mate X

javed - August 17, 2015 1:26 PM

still cnt say anythn as nthn cme out....captn should try to fbd hm out...god bless him

Mary - August 17, 2015 7:01 PM

*Sam: 17 people, both crew and pax.

Daniela - August 19, 2015 2:58 PM

Es terrible todo esto, la angustia de no saber nada, que abra pasado por tu linda cabezita,eras tan noble,tan ingenuo a tu edad,por que te fuiste tan solo? Si nunca fuiste asi,nunca estuviste asi...quienes realmente te conocian nunca te hubiesen dejado solo y de seguro estarias aca aun con todos quienes te querian, te sufrimos mucho favio eras tan especial para todos y un grande en lo que hacias...tu esencia encantaba...sigue sonriendo corazon donde quiera que estes...yo por mi parte orare por ti cada noche tal como ha sido hasta ahora..."nadie sabe los misterios del amor ni la muerte pero si que la gente que realmente amamos siempre vivira en nuestros corazones" y tu luz en nosotros nunca se apagara...besos infinitos al cielo y vuela alto corazon,te doy las gracias por ser mi compaƱero de vida durante casi 2 aƱos y entregarme lo mas puro y mejor de ti,eso lo llevo para siempre en lo mas profundo de mi ser...buen viaje...hasta pronto!

sonja powell - August 19, 2015 8:40 PM

What can we, the passengers do to force our senators to take action and demand that these cruise lines install "The man over board devices." My family has cut back on the number of cruises that we take as a result of reading your reports. We are thinking of not cruising altogether. No one goes anywhere on the ship alone and no stays in a cabin alone. We feel that if you have to take these kinds of precautions, then how can you relax on a vacation. Our Government has to take the lead in this matter and do the right thing.

edward escalante - August 20, 2015 4:58 AM

To the family of my friend favio condelence .he a good chef and a happy person we ganna missed him ..favio rest in peace bro,

john smith - August 22, 2015 11:36 AM

cunnard cruiseship need to change their working system that true their work pressure from the executive chef who don't know his job description properly always talk too much don't know what is going on this kind of pressure much have a great impact on the victim. thank you

everybody need to a rotation.....

stephen - August 23, 2015 5:15 AM

It is the Captain's responsibility to ensure that all crew members are safe and their welfare is paramount. Sad that Captain Kevin Oprey and his team overlooked this and the young Chef lost his life . May his soul rest in peace.

Klaus - August 24, 2015 3:27 AM

Don't really understand the comment of John Smith...
He would not be Executive Chef, if he don't know his Job.

Useless comment!!

Alfie Noakes - August 26, 2015 2:55 PM

Reading the comments and adding my own passenger experiences, sure cruise lines have profited greatly from 3rd world labour. Most the lines will make a big thing about how their assembled crew comes from 25 or so different countries but let's face it if you are American or European how often from crews of 000's have you been served by a fellow countryman on one of the mainstream lines ? It would make a refreshing change wouldn't it just sometimes but the lines won't pay such wage levels.

From the lines point of view (as some readers have stated) they can't be responsible when a depressed or mentally ill member of crew decides to go overboard. If they were on land the same people would jump off bridges and under trains etc... If they don't enjoy work on the ship then leave it is that easy.

Something meeting in the middle: Passengers do not know where they stand with tips, some prefer not to pay any because they despise that the line management deduct so called handling fees and the tips don't get solely to the crew. So people tend to tip their waiter or bar person (often in exchange for larger measures) the point being the 'invisible' crew behind the scenes who make everything tick just as much as the bridge crew receive nothing, so please cruise lines let's have an honest tips policy, where 100% of tips given go evenly to the low paid and often fantastic crew who's reputations keep these lines afloat. Bridge crew navigate and keep the ships safe but none of us return to cruising for this reason do we ? We return usually because we are treated like Kings so we are not pleased when our tips do not benefit 100% the well deserved lower paid crew members.

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